From as early as I can remember, I was bought up by Mother to believe in a supernatural, omnipotent God. This God had a son called Jesus, who, was the only being in the universe that could save my soul from an eternity of torment in a firey lake.
Being bought up like this meant having to go to church, a kind of baptist like cult church, where the women were not allowed to wear make-up, owning a TV was evil and where drummed into me further was the belief that my only salvation was a zombie like miracle man that could forgive me for my iniquities, which apparently were there from the day I was born. “Born into Sin” was the words they say. I remember at 12 years old being made to go into a “prayer room” where 2 men asked me if I enjoyed playing with myself!
The other day I found an old school exercise book. The cover said 1985, which made me seven years old. Inside was a paragraph I´d written asking for forgiveness for my sins. Now don´t get me wrong, but in my humble opinion, it´s a pretty malevolent God that would send a seven year old to Hell for eternity. I´d never lied, murdered, envied, lay with a woman before marriage or broken any other commandment fit to send anyone to a torturous afterlife, let alone a child.
I remember lying in bed at night, crying, because my school friends didn´t believe in God and were destined for Hell. I remember praying that Satan and his demons would keep away at night.
As I grew into my teens, I started to think for myself and slowly realised, maybe, I´m too old for imaginary friends but this religious indoctrination was so deeply ingrained, the thought of Hell still scared me into praying every night and asking for the forgiveness of my non sins.
It wasn´t really until I was in my early 20s, when I had my daughter, that I realised that what I had been taught was complete nonsense and tantamount to child abuse. Having my daughter made me realise, that no matter what she does to me in life, I would never send her to this lake of fire. I love her, apparently God loves me more but if I lie, cheat, envy or behave in any other natural humanistic way and don´t ask this invisible man for his forgiveness, I´m destined for eternal pain.
Now, as an atheist, I find it utterly disgusting that I, or anyone can be bought up this way and parents who decide to implant religious beliefs on there innocent children are as sick as the God they believe in.